For many years, the development of ecologically-oriented business in Russia has been without proper coordination or support mechanisms.
The XII International Forum, Ecology of Big City, to be held in St Petersburg in March, has been designed to tackle that problem by creating a flexible and effective mechanism of interaction between environmental and market structures.
St Petersburg, the northern capital, with its nearly two million cars, is well acquainted with a full range of environmental issues. However, it can boast that 95 per cent of its water is clear of effluents, in comparison to only 78 per cent in Brussels.
According to official statistics, in Russia today the volume of investment in ecological programmes and activities, is estimated to be about eight billion rubles a year, with an annual growth rate of about 20 per cent.
At the forum, representatives of the environmental authorities of the Russian Federation will articulate the needs of the state in the field of environmental protection while business interests will present potential government customers with their technology and designs.
"Thus, Ecology of Big City becomes a platform for addressing critical environmental issues, and even allows the possibility for young companies to successfully enter this market,” explained Sergey Voronkov, executive director of ExpoForum JSC and general director of Lenexpo JSC.
An exhibition showing the latest developments of Russian and foreign companies will include the Vodokanal of St Petersburg stand which will demonstrate the progress already made and the challenges that still lie ahead in the unique aquatic-ecology projects of the city.
On all working days of the forum in the neighbourhood of Lenexpo, an 'Ecomobil' will be in operation where citizens can dispose of out-of-date fluorescent lamps, mercury thermometers, batteries, car batteries, and energy-saving lamps.
The XII International Forum, Ecology of Big City, will take place in Lenexpo from the 20 to 23 March 2012.